BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — Independent candidate Mary-Jane Foster announced her campaign platform Monday regarding taxes, and her ambitious tax reform plan if elected as Bridgeport’s next mayor.
Foster was joined at a Monday afternoon press conference by members of the Bridgeport delegation, including state Sen. Ed Gomes and state Rep. Jack Hennessy — both of whom have endorsed Foster.
She highlighted her experiences as a successful businesswoman, adding that she has created jobs and employed Bridgeport residents for many local projects. Foster emphasized she is the only candidate with a credible plan to grow Bridgeport’s grand list and reduce the tax burden on Bridgeport residents.
“I understand the financial stress and fiscal burden that our taxes have put on our families," she said. "These taxes limit economic growth and impede on our city’s progress. That is why, I am pledging to not raise taxes next year if elected mayor.”
Members of the delegation echoed their support. They also reiterated concerns from the business community and state partners about investing in Bridgeport, due to their fear of reoccurring corruption in City Hall. There has been growing speculation that private investors will be waiting until after the election before announcing any further business plans for development in Bridgeport.
The Democratic candidate for mayor is Joe Ganim, who served over seven years in prison after he was convicted of federal bribery charges in a case directly related to a "pay-to-play" scheme during his tenure as mayor.
“It is extremely selfish of some of Mary-Jane’s opponents to be running,” Gomes said. “They know very well that if there are certain elected officials in office that funding from the state will dry up, and businesses will be running scared from Bridgeport. The fear of mismanagement and poor judgment in City Hall will destroy any progress Bridgeport has seen in the last decade.”
Hennessy added that he, like many Bridgeport residents, are still paying for the corruption decades ago through high taxes to counteract millions of dollars lost through poor investments and kickback schemes.
Foster is running as an Independent-Democrat on line G in the Nov. 3 general election. Also on the ballot are Republican Enrique Torres and Charles Coviello of the New Movement Party. Current Mayor Bill Finch is not on the November ballot after losing last month's Democratic primary to Ganim.
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